A friend recently decided the time had come to upgrade to a faster, bigger iMac and pass his current iMac along to his wife. We looked over all that Apple had to offer, decided on the various options available, and placed the order. When the new iMac arrived, we started the migration of data from one machine to the other. Well, we tried. Migration Assistant refused to see the Time Machine backup, even though it mounted on the new desktop without a problem. We did have a cloned backup on another drive, but that drive was Firewire only. The new iMac? USB and Thunderbolt ports only.
We tried using Migration Assistant, computer to computer over his wireless network. Nada. We tried a direct ethernet connection between the machines. Nope. The new computer couldn’t see the old one with Migration Assistant. I thought maybe something with the latest version, but using the same version on my own iMac and MacBook Air worked. Looking on Apple’s support boards tells me that a lot of people are having the same problem.
Well, when all else fails… Using SuperDuper! and a freshly formatted Seagate 2 TB USB drive we cloned the internal drive of the older iMac, connected it to the new iMac and launched Migration Assistant. This time MA saw the freshly formatted & cloned drive and we were in business. The migration seems to have been a total success. My friend is very happy with the speed of his new machine. In a few days, if all is still well with the new machine, the old one will get a clean installation of Mavericks and we’ll transfer all of the files from his wife’s old iMac. I have no idea why we had the problems with this one. I’ve never before run into this difficult a transition.